Anarchy and The Value Of A Photograph

Fabien Breuvart pulled off what I would call a lovely stunt great piece of performance art last week in Paris. He and a half dozen accomplices scrounged up several giant garbage bags full of anonymous vintage photos and–in a fit of anarchy–dumped these thousands of photos into a huge pile in front of the VIP entrance of the posh Paris Photo 2009 gala underway at the Louvre.

Inside the event, some of the worlds most valued photographs were aiming to fetch $60,000, but thanks to Breuvart, the international art crowd seemed more attuned to pile of vintage photography amidst cries of “free photos!” out front…seemingly a choice to stay outside to collect, even cherish, free and unusual images that had “no value”, rather than sip champagne and salivate over art whose value was chosen by others.

Is it tomfoolery or a breath of fresh air to see culturally-literate adults scavenging for pictures on their hands and knees as if they were kids and the pinata had just exploded at a birthday party. Is this a story about a stunt, about the power of photography, the maligned “value” of what the art market assigns to be worth our attention?

Video of the anarchists in action after the jump…[click the ‘continue reading’ link below]

(Note: the vid is in French, but that doesn’t keep you from understanding the “event” perfectly. You clearly get the sense that it’s there’s a disconnect present between value and no value, whos who and anonymity, the posh and the streets.)

[via the lovely blog Lens Culture.]

Get my every move: Follow Chase Jarvis on Twitter
Get exclusive content: Become a Fan on Facebook

80 Responses to Anarchy and The Value Of A Photograph

  1. The Malabarian Doctah December 1, 2009 at 9:44 am #

    Power to the people!

  2. Sherri Innis December 1, 2009 at 9:50 am #

    magnifique ça

  3. Nikita Buida December 1, 2009 at 9:55 am #

    That is really cool idea! I totally like the fact that a value of free and anonymous art was at such an impressive display!

  4. Ruben Brulat December 1, 2009 at 10:00 am #

    Thanks to Fabien, who had this amazing idea. We had such a funny moment, and we really expect that security will pull us out the Louvre. But no.

    Paris Photo director was happy and the people more than we will have ever expect. Everyone goin' out with bunch of sentimental valuable photographs. No money there just a family, or friendly moment that was shot few decades ago, witch in fact can't be valued. Thanks to you.

  5. Zak.Shelhamer December 1, 2009 at 10:03 am #

    Thats insane! that sounds like a really awesome dream… "here Zak go ahead and dig though these priceless photos, pick whatever you want… its free" That is a gorgeous moment in the photo world.

  6. Matt Timmons December 1, 2009 at 10:32 am #

    Nope. It was just killer deals on photos during Black Friday.

  7. JeffScottShaw December 1, 2009 at 11:08 am #

    I was reminded of the value of a photo and the joy that it can bring over Thanksgiving as we projected slides for my sickly Grandma. She may have a tough time recognizing people today but when she saw those slides (some from 50 years ago) she identified with all of them and it was the happiest we have seen her in months. They weren't amazingly shot, didn't have the best technique, but they communicated and we're valued by her. I would have loved to be in Paris for that just to see the faces of those who walked away with something that while free, held a high value.

  8. nielsp December 1, 2009 at 12:42 pm #

    Thanks for sharing this. It is one of the nicest bits of news I have heard in a long time. It is just great to see that people still love the photograph. Especially, as these people seem to demonstrate, if it captures a moment in time.


  9. Freddy December 1, 2009 at 1:32 pm #

    There you go, Thanksgiving was last week but hey never too late to give back :) So I'm thankful for my French and here's something back.

    Starts at
    Dude:The idea is to stay together and have everything done quickly. When you get to the designated area, tear the bags open and empty their content.

    Dude: We want to prove that photography should not be something that is necessarily expensive. It can be, but it shouldn’t be alright that other forms of photography are being diminished, uh… photography should be rewarding for everyone.

    Long hair chick: It’s an awesome concept. It’s statement that art should be accessible to everyone.

    Old lady: I took a whole bunch and I’m simply amazed by those pictures because it reminds me of my childhood and how photographs used to be. It’s beautiful.

    Chick with green scarf: It’s fun to look around for pictures.

    Dude: Photography is a social practice, something that is done collectively, it’s a proof of love and what else do we need more today than love… I don’t need any wallpapers, I just want those proof of love hanging on my wall. Photography is a proof of love.

    Unidentified speaker: It’s beautiful

  10. cristina December 1, 2009 at 1:47 pm #

    bravo fabien!

  11. Dan Creighton December 1, 2009 at 3:48 pm #

    The micro-stock paradigm comes to the fine art world. What a nice play on the times this stunt was.

  12. Tuffer December 1, 2009 at 3:49 pm #

    thats brilliant. I like that people actually went after them. that shows a respect and understanding on their part for images in general and not just the expensive ones inside.

  13. jay December 1, 2009 at 4:34 pm #

    Coolest idea ever!

  14. Scott Hargis December 1, 2009 at 4:55 pm #

    I think it's brilliant. And I think the message is, different photos are valuable for different reasons. Those people were experiencing the simple joy of finding and looking at images. Then they went inside and experienced art on a different level.
    It's kind of like how I experience music — I get incredible happiness and even therapeutic value out of banging away on my guitar (I suck, suck, suck on the guitar), but I can also get similar feelings from going to the SF Opera. Two different musical experiences, both valid.

  15. Arnel Garcia December 1, 2009 at 6:15 pm #

    Hi Chase. Congratulations to you regarding the article about you in the Masters issue of Digital Photo Pro. You are really a Master of the New Media, and a Master of sharing and more.

  16. Wayne Yuan December 2, 2009 at 10:41 am #

    Very nice article!

  17. Julia Z December 2, 2009 at 4:08 pm #

    What they did is very cool. There are also good examples of what art is, what value is and how all of this is social proof for group behavior. Interesting stuff :)

  18. Jarle December 4, 2009 at 4:22 am #

    Very cool! One could argue that art is business – nothing else.

    Art often reminds me of the story about the emperor's new clothes.

  19. JasonP December 5, 2009 at 3:26 pm #

    I just watched a documentary over here in the UK called "The Mona Lisa Curse" where the art-critic host details the demise of art for art's sake once the Mona Lisa became a spectacle and something "to see" vs. something to admire and appreciate. He says that was the start of the super inflated prices for art (and photography might as well be included). Good to see someone bucking the trend.

  20. Britman December 7, 2009 at 9:57 am #

    Brilliant, we can't let those elites put a price tag on our photos. Every picture is priceless to those that love and cherish them. Whether it's your first pet or the only picture left of a long past Mother. To you no amount of money will ever make you part with it.

  21. Tommy December 7, 2009 at 8:11 pm #

    This is just lovely and the instigators should be very proud for having shown the social activity if photography for what it is. How sweet was that older ladies reaction!
    Thanks for posting chase.

  22. -gary December 18, 2009 at 7:51 am #

    The sad part of all of it, is that those are thousands of lost memories lying there on the floor. Photography is not that old, it's not like those are images from ancient times long past.

  23. David Sowers / DASO Photo December 24, 2009 at 8:32 am #

    refreshing…nice to see the value of digging through the "old shoe box". I love it!

  24. Thanh Defaria April 25, 2014 at 5:35 pm #

    Love that 71 (?) Pontiac Grand Prix for sale less than the Pontiac indication.

  25. Lissette Bingert May 7, 2014 at 5:58 pm #

    Thanks for ones marvelous posting! I seriously enjoyed reading it, you can be a great author.I will be sure to bookmark your blog and will often come back at some point. I want to encourage continue your great posts, have a nice evening!

  26. Norbert Alvizo May 9, 2014 at 10:02 am #

    My husband and i ended up being absolutely satisfied that Ervin could round up his inquiry through the entire ideas he was given while using the web page. It’s not at all simplistic to just be giving out procedures which often other people have been selling. And we all acknowledge we have got the writer to be grateful to for this. Those explanations you made, the easy blog menu, the friendships your site make it possible to instill – it is mostly fantastic, and it is aiding our son and the family reckon that that idea is fun, and that’s extraordinarily important. Thank you for the whole lot!

  27. auto catalog May 10, 2014 at 3:28 am #

    Its similar to you recite my mind! You seem to get a lot concerning this, like you wrote the book in it or something. I reflect that you could do with some pics to drive the message home-grown a little crumb, on the contrary additional than that, this is enormous blog. A vast interpret. I will without doubt be back.

  28. Caryl Herington May 10, 2014 at 12:04 pm #

    Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wished to say that I’ve really enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. After all I

  29. Jeana Sandau May 10, 2014 at 6:15 pm #

    Nice post. I was checking continuously this blog and I’m impressed! Extremely helpful info specially the last part :) I care for such info much. I was looking for this certain information for a very long time. Thank you and best of luck.

  30. Tamara May 13, 2014 at 1:58 am #

    Our pair of eyes are the most important part of us. With it we see everything. Thanks for this website. It helped me seriously know how great our eyes are.

  31. May 14, 2014 at 3:37 pm #

    I really like your writing style, excellent info, thanks for
    posting :D. “Inquiry is fatal to certainty.” by Will Durant.

  32. Kelsi May 15, 2014 at 3:37 pm #

    Like to buy electronic cigarettes. Can I buy e cigs online? If so, Where to buy electronic cigarettes online? I can’t find them. Can anyone just tell me where can i buy electronic cigarette online please?.

  33. skyline r31 specs May 17, 2014 at 2:38 am #

    I have been blogging since last month, my blog was indexed previously in google but in the test i conducted, i exploration in support of a confident keyword associated taking place my blog nevertheless it only shows the blog title and it directs me to the homepage not taking place the genuine post. Necessary help!!!.

  34. Salvi Credit May 17, 2014 at 3:03 am #

    One thing is that while you are searching for a student loan you may find that you’ll want a cosigner. There are many situations where this is true because you might discover that you do not employ a past credit history so the lender will require that you’ve someone cosign the credit for you. Thanks for your post.

  35. Aubrey May 19, 2014 at 11:28 pm #

    I found this article one of the most thought-provoking I’ve ever read. The points you have made are excellent and I feel I’ve learned a little something by reading this.

  36. Sherrill May 20, 2014 at 3:24 pm #

    I delight in, result in I found just what I used to be looking for.
    You’ve ended my four day lengthy hunt! God Bless
    you man. Have a nice day. Bye

  37. www May 23, 2014 at 4:33 am #

    I really like it whenever people come together and share views. Great website, stick with it!

  38. May 23, 2014 at 8:53 am #

    I get pleasure from, result in I found just what I used to be taking a look for. You’ve ended my 4 day lengthy hunt! God Bless you man. Have a great day. Bye

  39. read May 25, 2014 at 2:03 am #

    Very nice write-up. I certainly appreciate this site. Keep it up!

  40. Legal Funding May 27, 2014 at 12:15 pm #

    Hi there are using WordPress for your site platform? I’m new to the blog world but I’m trying to get started and set up my own. Do you require any html coding knowledge to make your own blog? Any help would be really appreciated!

  41. 5 shades media May 29, 2014 at 8:25 pm #

    I’m writing to make you know of the fine experience our girl undergone studying your web site. She discovered numerous pieces, including how it is like to possess an incredible coaching mindset to make the mediocre ones quite simply grasp specific advanced issues. You really surpassed people’s expected results. Thanks for rendering such warm and helpful, trusted, edifying and even cool thoughts on the topic to Mary.

  42. webdesigntoronto88 May 30, 2014 at 10:51 am #

    I feel that is among the so much vital info for me. And i am glad studying your article. However wanna commentary on some normal issues, The website style is great, the articles is in point of fact nice : D. Excellent process, cheers

  43. 1989 buick station wagon June 1, 2014 at 4:11 pm #

    Really nice information can live set up resting on net blog .

  44. Josphine Clasen June 3, 2014 at 2:34 am #

    #31 “Tak Bai, on the other hand, I would classify as negligent manslaughter, that is, there was no intent to kill but death occured from extreme negligence and/or recklessness.” > This is quite right, I think. It was not an outcome of public policy (the “iron fist” Thaksin is often said to have had re measures in the South).

  45. penny stock egghead June 4, 2014 at 8:36 am #

    Great publish. I understand one thing much more complicated on distinct blogs each day. It will eventually often be stimulating to go through material from other writers and apply somewhat anything from their shop. I?ˉd prefer to use some together with the information on my site whether you don?ˉt head. Natually I?ˉll provide you with a hyperlink on your own website site. Many thanks for sharing.

  46. Raymundo Esplain June 5, 2014 at 11:04 pm #

    I simply want to say I will be beginner to blogging and also honestly appreciated you’re web page. Most very likely I’m intending to bookmark your internet site. You ever have very very good stories. Appreciate it for disclosing your website page.

  47. ZAIMO Alba June 6, 2014 at 12:59 am #

    Hi, Neat post. There is a problem with your website in web explorer, may test this… IE nonetheless is the marketplace chief and a large part of people will miss your fantastic writing due to this problem.

  48. Timika Clatterbuck June 7, 2014 at 10:31 am #

    Someone necessarily help to make significantly articles I’d state. That is the very first time I frequented your web page and so far? I surprised with the research you made to make this actual submit extraordinary. Great job!

  49. Sheldon June 9, 2014 at 3:04 am #

    how do i know when the cartomiser is fully drained,will it stop prodicing the smoke?

  50. Lionel June 9, 2014 at 9:27 pm #

    you make blogging look easy. It’s now and once more perplexing to merely discover yourself giving for no cost thoughts that a lot of folks have already been selling. Wohh exactly what I used to be hunting for, thanks for putting up. And just to be on-topic together with the submit, I do not know for you girls but to me hair is really the most important factor for my look. Bodybuilding is really a lifestyle, it takes commitment and hard work Would you post a lot more concerning the topic in future articles? It absolutely was funny since I didn’t require any nicotine support although I was there (patches, gum etc never worked anyway) but when I received home, I was ready to chain smoke again. Your writing style is original and engaging. Where else could I get that type of information written in such an perfect way? My ladies had been therefore thrilled to study them and have truly been taking pleasure in those issues. Make sure you let me know where you received your design. He genuinely purchased me personally lunch due to the fact I came across it with regard to him! Hey, i located your site by way of bing. what’s the secret to get so numerous comments to your blog? Fine along with your permission permit me to grab your feed to keep updated with forthcoming submit. I’ve been looking for information on this topic for awhile now.

  51. Herminia June 11, 2014 at 1:52 am #

    I’m not sure where you are getting your info, but great topic. I needs to spend some time learning much more or understanding more. Thanks for great information I was looking for this information for my mission.

  52. Cool Blog June 15, 2014 at 11:15 pm #

    Howdy! I just would like to give an enormous thumbs up for the nice data you have got right here on this post. I shall be coming back to your blog for extra soon.

  53. where to find gay people June 20, 2014 at 5:39 pm #

    This post presents clear idea for the new visitors of blogging, that really how to
    do blogging and site-building.

  54. replica rolex sale July 4, 2014 at 3:25 am #

  55. replica louis vuitton designer bags July 7, 2014 at 3:31 am #

    Want to buy fake louis vuitton bags for me! ~

  56. Rueben Kubert July 21, 2014 at 3:22 am #

    I have taken notice that in unwanted cameras, specialized sensors help to focus automatically. The actual sensors associated with some cameras change in in the area of contrast, while others make use of a beam of infra-red (IR) light, especially in low lumination. Higher specs cameras from time to time use a blend of both devices and could have Face Priority AF where the camera can ‘See’ any face while keeping focused only on that. Thanks for sharing your thinking on this website.

  57. are younique products tested on animals July 22, 2014 at 12:23 am #

    Do you mind if I quote a few of your posts as long as I provide credit and sources back to your webpage? My website is in the exact same niche as yours and my users would definitely benefit from a lot of the information you present here. Please let me know if this alright with you. Many thanks!

  58. immigration lawyer Fort Myers July 23, 2014 at 6:36 pm #

    Have you ever considered creating an ebook or guest authoring on other sites? I have a blog centered on the same ideas you discuss and would love to have you share some stories/information. I know my readers would appreciate your work. If you’re even remotely interested, feel free to shoot me an email.

  59. buy omega de ville watches July 31, 2014 at 5:33 pm #

    One thing I want to say is that often car insurance termination is a horrible experience so if you’re doing the best things as a driver you won’t get one. Some people do are sent the notice that they have been officially dumped by their particular insurance company they have to fight to get supplemental insurance following a cancellation. Low-cost auto insurance rates usually are hard to get after having a cancellation. Understanding the main reasons pertaining to auto insurance canceling can help individuals prevent sacrificing one of the most important privileges out there. Thanks for the thoughts shared by your blog.

  60. formation pnl September 1, 2014 at 6:07 am #

    Visiter le magnifique site : la pnl

  61. Entertainment-Consulting September 10, 2014 at 6:57 pm #

    Have you ever thought about adding a little bit more than just your articles? I mean, what you say is fundamental and everything. However just imagine if you added some great images or video clips to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with pics and videos, this blog could undeniably be one of the best in its field. Superb blog!

  62. Grand Rapids Criminal Lawyer September 16, 2014 at 7:56 pm #

    I know this if off topic but I’m looking into starting my own blog and was curious what all is needed to get setup? I’m assuming having a blog like yours would cost a pretty penny? I’m not very internet smart so I’m not 100% positive. Any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated. Appreciate it

  63. Rogelio Busalacchi September 22, 2014 at 2:12 pm #

    Congrats to Chelsea!

  64. Expedia coupons September 24, 2014 at 4:39 am #

    Very nice blog you have build. Excellent posts and articles.

  65. Janessa Buehring September 29, 2014 at 6:00 pm #

    Please let me know if you’re looking for a article author for your blog. You have some really good posts and I feel I would be a good asset. If you ever want to take some of the load off, I’d really like to write some content for your blog in exchange for a link back to mine. Please shoot me an e-mail if interested. Thanks!

  66. black mold removal united products mn September 30, 2014 at 2:19 pm #

    It’s going tο be end of mine day, except before finish I am reɑding this
    fantastic article to improѵе my know-how.

  67. Carli Valles October 3, 2014 at 9:03 pm #

    Great read!, I love reading about health. Loved the tip rainey just made. Its so difficult to find the right product for me. I’ve been looking now for 3 weeks! LOL Just want to let you all know I will make my goal one way or another. I promise you that! Wish me luck! :)

  68. Bryan Malachowski October 9, 2014 at 4:12 am #

    Good write-up, I am normal visitor of one

  69. October 10, 2014 at 6:23 am #

    This site is actually just magnificent, the information is upgraded and clear. I am going to absolutely explore this website once again. I’m sorry if my English isn’t really acceptable, i’m a Spanish foreign language presenter, sorry with regards to that. Stay up to date with the good work:-RRB-.

  70. e mobile code review October 11, 2014 at 8:25 pm #

    What’s up i am kavin, its my first occasion to commenting anyplace, when i read this piece oof writing i thought i could
    also make comment ddue to this gpod piece of

  71. vienna hotels October 12, 2014 at 8:30 pm #

    You completed several fine points there. I did a search on the issue and found a good number of persons will go along with with your blog.

  72. be careful with my heart december 12 2013 October 15, 2014 at 8:21 pm #

    Learn about these handy i – Phone Apps for Bird Watchers and go watching in style.

    This website has a bird-watching activity book so that preschoolers can print out, color and learn about different birds.
    ” Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger are prisoners in “Escape Plan.

  73. Madeline Gruger October 16, 2014 at 12:28 pm #

    Great read, I love reading about health. Loved the tip haley just made. Its so difficult to find the right product for me. God knows I’ve tried! I’ve been looking now for 3 weeks! LOL Just want to let you all know I will make my goal one way or another. I promise you that! Wish me luck! :)

  74. Jina October 18, 2014 at 5:52 am #

    My prograammer is trting to persuade mee to moive tto .net from PHP.
    Ihave always disliked the idea because of thhe costs. Buut he’s tryiong nonme the less.
    I’ve been using WordPress oon numesrous websites for about a year
    andd am concerned about switching to anoter platform.
    I hace heard great things ahout Is there a wway I can transfer alll myy wordpress posrs ino it?
    Anny kinjd of hep would bee greatly appreciated!

  75. October 19, 2014 at 11:15 pm #

    We stumled ovver hee coming feom a different web address and thought I mioght as well
    check tthings out. I like what I see soo
    now i amm folowing you. Look forward too fibding out about your
    wweb page again.

  76. famulatus November 24, 2014 at 10:04 am #

    Leather-based is in all respects a doubt materials

  77. Chain Chronicle Cheats Android November 26, 2014 at 9:30 pm #

    But if they are willing to manage them on their own, Apollo would let them go,” he
    said. With a staggering 50 million users, Game Center is massive community and now offers
    recommendations for new games as properly as people you might like to add as friends based around the games they play.

    The emulator is available and the integrated environment is Eclipse.

  78. 2014 top fastest cars December 11, 2014 at 6:41 pm #

    thanks for the nicest information, i hope it can be my reference at my blog

  79. Edinburgh Electrician December 31, 2014 at 3:36 am #

    Your place is valueble for me. Thanks!…

  80. February 2, 2015 at 1:51 am #

    Hello there, You’ve done an incredible job. I will certainly digg it and personally suggest to my friends. I am sure they will be benefited from this site.

Highslide for Wordpress Plugin